The Rossoneri coach speaks on the eve of the Ferraris match: “It will be complicated, I’ll choose the best eleven”
Three away games of the season and three draws. The Milan from Pegs he built his strength on external performance in the past, but in this league there have been half missteps against Atalanta and Sassuolo. Between one Champions League match and another there is the match in Genoa against Sampdoria di Giampaolo to face between turnover and ambitions.
THE WORDS IN CONFERENCE
Will it be tough against Sampdoria at Ferraris?
A solid and motivated opponent, with a precise identity. He comes from a defeat that will bring him determination and we know what lies ahead.
Have your opponents changed the way they face you?
You cannot draw a balance between home and away. Our performance counts and apart from Bergamo where we did well, instead against Sassuolo and Salzburg we could have done better from a technical point of view.
Will Origi play from the first minute?
I think yes. He is better and has had minutes to improve his condition. He needs to play and is a very good player.
Can Dest also play on the left?
I already knew him because we had been following him for some time. I found features that I expected, but I found him more alert on defense than I thought. He has to do more with the ball because he has great quality and in the offensive phase he can overturn the action and jump the man. He can also play on the left, but we also have other solutions. Newcomers must be given time, but Dest is certainly ready.
Do you expect more from De Ketelaere and Diaz on the trocar?
Adli is also a playmaker. We have more solutions to exploit. De Ketelaere is fitting in well and doing what I ask him, but he needs time. I see it growing and peaceful. Diaz has special characteristics and I certainly count on them.
Is turnover essential?
For me it’s not just the 11 players. I have a group of strong players and we have a precise identity. In training everyone gives their best and for me the starting 11 are always the best for the match I face, but we will never have the counter-proof. I don’t rotate to involve everyone regardless, but to win games.
Does Diaz suffer from competition from De Ketelaere?
If you play for Milan you have to accept and you have to expect the competition because to return to certain levels and win we cannot expect to have 11 owners and other players under the others. I don’t think it’s suffering from the competition, but in case it wouldn’t be good. There is competition and unity in our group and it will be like this throughout the year and it has always been that way. A coach always starts with an ideal formation, then it’s up to the players to change his mind. I have no unmotivated players and they are working well.
How is Rebic and when is he back?
Rebic has severe back pain and is doing everything to get back.
Is there a reason why Adli has limited space?
It will also be his turn. He certainly has talent and perspective, I expect a lot from him but also from his teammates, then I have to make some choices. When I deem it appropriate, I will deploy it.
Four out of six games you started at a disadvantage: how do you work on this?
The only wrong approach was the one with Udinese, I don’t think that’s the problem but it’s a fact that needs to be reversed. Not being disadvantaged helps, but we must underline the character and awareness of the team that continues to create to overturn the game.
Are you looking for a row of victories like last season’s finale?
We want to win them all and we prepare them like this. If we want to stay on top of games to win, we need a lot of them. We are doing well, but in some situations we have to grow.
Can Adli and Diaz play together in another module as well?
At this moment no, I have never tried it.
How has Pobega improved and where does it need to improve?
I liked how he entered Salzburg with vigor and strength. It can be more accurate in shooting and its performance is on the rise.
Does Saelemaekers start from the first minute?
I don’t give training, but he certainly played well in Salzburg. He didn’t force situations where he didn’t have to and on the contrary he did it when he could. In Salzburg we did quite well, but with Sampdoria we will try to do better.
What have you seen so far from De Ketelaere?
I think we can look for him a little more because he has the quality and physical strength to withstand the opposing pressure. We have to trust him more in his qualities than him, while he has to understand even better when to connect the game and when instead to go in depth because he knows how to do both and we need them.
Does De Ketelaere need to play a little more?
I don’t let a player play just to give him time. I choose the players to win and if he starts from the beginning it is to win, not to make him enter the best. Obviously the more he plays, the better he will get to know his teammates, but my goal is to win the game.
Are you worried about the defensive phase?
Sometimes we made some mistakes and we conceded a few too many goals. We need an attitude on the part of the whole team to improve. There are situations that I don’t like for intensity, concentration and communication in the defensive phase.
Did a muscular attacking midfielder help to be more compact? Will this variable be reviewed?
You can do everything to win games, even by looking for new paths. It is unlikely that things done well last year can be repeated this year, because they know us better. It is true that we conceded a few more goals, but the balance was not lacking. You don’t always take goals because of your own fault, but also because of the quality of the opponent.
How does this year differ from your previous two seasons?
Now we can focus more on the details that can make a difference because we have already done the bulk in the past.
How is the corner problem solved?
We need to make them and make better use of them. I, but also the players, know that we have to do better. We are working on it and I hope to see improvements because it is one of the details where we need to improve. It has become a priority and we are working on it more.
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